If the concept of fractals is new to you, I suggest you stop reading this, go to YouTube and watch this video that describes it. The visual presentation will lay a very good foundation for the more abstract teaching I will share in this blog.
(Not that I really expected anyone to stop reading, but still . . .).
The Science Dictionary describes a fractal as “a complex geometric pattern exhibiting self-similarity in that small details of its structure viewed at any scale repeat elements of the overall pattern.”
Knowledge of fractals is about fifty years old. Benoit Mandelbrot popularized and named the concept in the early 70s. Mathematicians have called the discovery one of the greatest since Pythagoras (600 B.C.) which puts Mandelbrot in pretty heady company.
Clearly many ancient cultures knew something about fractals and there are hints of the idea in various writings from antiquity. In modern times, Gaston Julia bumped up against the concept in 1918 and wrote a bit about it, but until the advent of the computer, we were not able to really grasp the infinity of the nested patterns, nor to see how nearly universal they are in living beings, from the micro field of human capillaries to the macro of forests.
So far, the bulk of what you will find presented in contemporary research is geometric fractals with the repeating patterns at various scales.
Long before I knew the term, we were inadvertently dealing with the fractals of numbers which is a science that is not being discussed yet, outside of Hebraic theology.
The number we began with (accidentally) is seven. Initially we saw the seven redemptive gifts as simply a stand alone list.
Then God showed us that all the sevens in Scripture followed the same pattern. There was “self-similarity” in those lists.
Eventually we saw applications in society. Over time, we came to see that same pattern in the redemptive gifts of the soul, the spirit, land, communities, races, governments, businesses, every kind of social institution from sports teams to labor unions to denominations, then amazingly we saw it in time, and now, most recently in the human body.
Our new album “Your Health and the Redemptive Gifts” provides an introduction to using a fractal approach to healing. (Yes, that thing on the cover is a geometric fractal!)
Once we came to understand that a fractal can exist in numbers, as well as in geometry, it opened up a huge new world of research possibilities. We were drawn into the fractal of seven by God, back before we knew a fractal from a fraction, faction, fiction or friction, but now that fractals have moved from the area of the pie chart of things “we don’t know what we don’t know” to things “we know we don’t know” we can research with intentionality.
At present we are exploring the fractals of tw0, three, four, five, ten and 12. We have discovered that ten is a compound of three and seven. If you look at the lists of ten in Scripture like the ten plagues and the Ten Commandments, you will see that they parallel the Trinity in the first three, plus the redemptive gifts in the later seven.
Similarly, 12 starts with the seven gifts and ends with the fractal of five.
Four is an interesting number in that it is two pairs of two, with each side following the fractal of two, but four seems to be a fractal in its own right, not just a compound of two. We are not making much progress with this one yet, but we keep poking at it, hoping for a serendipitous moment when the Holy Spirit causes us to see what is right before our eyes that we can’t comprehend yet.
Most recently our research took a huge step forward in accuracy when we came to understand the concept of The Mother Fractal. More on that soon.
This article is simply an introduction to the concept of fractals so that there is some foundation for understanding the subsequent articles I will be writing.
It is really unfair to you guys when I research something for ten years and then distill it down to a 723 word article and expect you to be right there with me in your comprehension.
Gotta start somewhere.
Copyright August 2012 by Arthur Burk
From room 327 in a Teacher/Giver/Prophet/Prophet hierarchy of land